To remember her son’s childhood, Soraya Cartwright stockpiled pictures, video clips, and mementos. Irked that many types of videotape only have a 15-year lifespan; she looked for a way to safeguard her memories for generations, and as a result founded her own digitizing business, Life’s Sweet. Today, she and her technicians convert videotape and film formats to archival quality DVDs; they can also store audio footage on CDs, rather than player pianos. In addition, they scan pictures to save them in digital format, compile them into photo books, or showcase them on custom greeting cards.
Peter and Christy Kopp know the importance of children's mobility firsthand. Their daughter, Kayla, is physically disabled, and her wheelchair was her source of freedom. But when Kayla outgrew her first wheelchair, the Kopps knew there were other children out there who could benefit from it—they just didn't know how to reach them. So they began the Kids Mobility Network, which refurbishes and redistributes durable medical equipment for children with physical disabilities.
After collecting idle wheelchairs and other medical equipment from donors, the Kids Mobility Network works it back to like-new condition and matches it to an applicant whose needs it meets. This includes equipment ranging from manual or power wheelchairs to walkers and adaptive bikes. To date, Kids Mobility Network has served more than 900 children with disabilities, providing more than $3 million worth of equipment.
Indulge Wine School's staff of educators, such as Kris in Jacksonville, a wine expert and blogger, expands wine knowledge with ease, having turned the revelry-steeped tassels of nearly 3,000 graduates. Classes of 12–20 take place in venues throughout the United States, as students swirl and sip their study materials and nibble complimentary appetizers. Every class ends with a Q&A session, during which potation professors shine a light on oenophilic mysteries including tannin content and regional differences. Afterward, students continue to ferment knowledge at home with a complimentary electronic copy of Indulge's book A Fun and Informative Introduction to the Wonderful World of Wine, a food-and-wine-pairing chart, and a top-10 list of wine-buying tips.
Cliff and Asia Lyons believe in community. Not an online community or an office community, but something that has become all too rare: a community built on shared recipes and helping one another. After achieving success as a chef and a schoolteacher for Cherry Creek School District, the two blended their passions and founded The Spoon to revive that sense of tableside camaraderie. Using cooking as their core, the organization's lessons impart important food-preparation techniques and easy recipes, but also branch out beyond the kitchen. The Lyonses stress the importance of continued education and spread their micro-community into the greater community by having their wards prepare dinners for families at the Ronald McDonald House and sort items at the local food bank.
In an interview with CBS4 Studios, the duo explained that “when kids help make it, they want to eat it.” So their classes focus on healthy eating habits and blending bright flavors with a do-it-yourself attitude. They set up a kitchen area with tools and supplies at local schools, then help kids prepare chicken and rice soup or Vietnamese spring rolls—"one of the kids’ favorites.” Students in series classes, meanwhile, take their lessons to the next level by participating in off-site field trips to restaurants.
See how Groupon helps you discover local causes and lend a helping hand at the Groupon Grassroots blog.
Colorado Puppy Rescue works to save the lives of and find loving, permanent homes for as many puppies as possible. To that end, the organization partners with rural shelters and rescuers that don't have enough funding to adopt the puppies, many of which would otherwise face euthanasia due to overcrowding and lack of necessary resources. Colorado Puppy Rescue receives new puppies each week, and as a shelterless rescue, places them in foster homes and hosts adoption events at a local Petco. All puppies placed for adoption have been examined by a vet technician and are up-to-date on vaccinations.
The Marion Downs Hearing Center (MDHC) aims to help meet the needs of individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing, as well as their families and colleagues. Its services address the needs of all age groups, providing newborn hearing screenings and speech-language pathology for children and adults, as well as helping teenagers who are deaf or hard of hearing to transition from high school to college or the workforce through its teen program. In 2011, MDHC screened 3,000 babies for hearing loss at birth and provided 100 audiologists, teachers, and researchers with professional training.